Comedian John McBlain: not me on website telling sectarian jokes about Celtic manager Neil Lennon and Sinn Fein politician
Comedian John McBlain has denied being the man in an online video making sick sectarian jokes about Celtic manager Neil Lennon and a Sinn Fein politician.
A video on the satirical Loyalists Against Democracy Facebook page claims to show a stand-up routine by John McBlain (below) of Spittin' Politics fame.
During the act in an unidentified club, a man doing an impression of Ian Paisley joked that the driver of the PSNI Land Rover Sinn Fein MLA Gerry Kelly jumped on was sacked for "not running the b****** over".
The comic also said that Celtic boss Lennon had appealed for people to stop sending him bullets in the post saying: "Just put them in his f****** head, never mind the post."
The man onstage can be seen wearing the ex-DUP leader's trademark hat, coat, gloves and a sash – identical to those used in McBlain's routine.
But speaking to the Belfast Telegraph, Mr McBlain strongly denied his involvement in the video – claiming it had been doctored to create mischief.
"I have never used a venomous statement like that in my act ever," said Mr McBlain, well-known for his takes on local politicians. "I've had different things put on that site, I think everybody knows I dress up as Paisley. I appeal to both sides, so I would never come off with anything like that."
He continued: "I certainly don't condone violence in any shape or form, it's a thing I like to steer clear of. I've been doing comedy for 32 years and I've never used or ever thought violence in any way should be attached or attributed to comedy.
"That site does spoof send-offs of different people, they are trying to create a bit of mischief."
The routine was condemned by the DUP and Sinn Fein.
The butt of the jokes:
Sinn Fein's Gerry Kelly was criticised for clinging to the bonnet of a Land Rover after a nationalist was arrested at a parade in June. Mr Kelly said he was trying to calm the situation. Former Northern Ireland footballer and Celtic manager Lennon has received a number of sectarian death threats, attacks and bullets in the post during his career.